A former Royal Marines bandsman from Deal is planning a big band concert in the town, to remember the 11 fallen bandsmen of the 1989 IRA explosion
A former Royal Marines bandsman from Deal will fulfil his dream this year by arranging a big band concert in the town.
The concert will be held at The Astor Theatre on Sunday, July 13 at 7.30pm to celebrate 25 years since the barracks in Deal were bombed.
Andrew Gronkowski, of Cambridge Road, Deal, said: “I was personally involved in the IRA bombing of Deal barracks in 1989 and it has been my wish ever since to arrange a big band concert in Deal, this July for the 25th anniversary.”
The big band will consist of ex-Royal Marines, who are all professional musicians, from around the country.
Mr Gronkowski said: “The band members and I will receive no fee. We are playing music for people who may have been involved in any way with anyone or anything that relates to the events of 1989 and for the people of Deal.
“This is how we have chosen to remember our 11 fallen bandsmen.”
Principal director of Music of the Band of HM Royal Marines Lt Col Nick Grace has been formally invited by Mr Gronkowski.
Lt Col Grace has conducted the Band of HM Royal Marines at the annual concert on Walmer Green for several years.
Tickets for the one night only event will go on sale in March from the Astor Theatre, Stanhope Road.
They will cost £15 each, with the proceeds going to three charities: The Royal Marines Band Benevolent Fund, The Royal Marines Charitable Trust and The Royal Marines Legion.
Mr Gronkowski is looking for sponsorship of £50-£100 to assist with the hire of the venue.
If you would be willing to help, please leave a cheque addressed to Mr Gronkowski at the Astor Theatre in Stanhope Road, Deal.
Andrew Gronkowski has spent the past 25 years wondering why he wasn't one of those killed in the IRA bombing of Deal barracks at 8.27am on September 22, 1989.
Read his story in this week's East Kent Mercury, out tomorrow.
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